Forums: Skydiving: Instructors:
When is it time................

 


baronn  (D 22387)

May 4, 2011, 10:34 PM
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When is it time................ Can't Post

After trying to make a full time job out of skydiving for the last 3 yrs,. I'm wondering. is it really worth it? By far the lowest pay for the amount of time invested. Very hard to get other things going because it was necessary at the last place I was at, to put so much time in. I finally got fed up and quit and am wondering if it's worth going thru another summer of it. I have another business that pays MUCH better but, I miss jumping. I really enjoyed being an instructor and after investing so much in time and energy to get all my ratings, I hate to just walk away. I hated being enslaved by the management at the last DZ I was at. Seems like the last concern of anyone in this sport from DZO's to USPA is the ability of anyone to make a living by doing this. No ins., no benefits, and you can be replaced by the next 500 jump wonder that walks in the door. Anyone have any thoughts on this?


BobMoore  (D 13136)

May 4, 2011, 11:18 PM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

You just about summed it up there. I had a regular Monday-Friday 8 to 5 job that paid the bills and I worked at the DZ, it was a tandem factory, on Saturday and Sunday.

That was okay, for a while, then the DZ got sold and I didn't agree with some of the opinions of the new owner, who had no instructor ratings.

Those ten years were some of the most fun years of my life but the novelty wore off and now I jump for my own selfish amusement.


diablopilot  (D License)

May 5, 2011, 6:27 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Yep.

You summed it up pretty well.


stayhigh  (F 111)

May 5, 2011, 6:48 AM
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If you have a job that pay much better why not focus on that full time and start fun jumpin????
There are lots of kids who has nothing else to do and really want the job.
Have you ever thought that you are taking up that space??????

If i had a real job that pays more than being working skydiver then i would say fuck work jump, i would just show up at the dz only to fun jump.

If you are one of those lucky ones with real world skill, then i'd say stop bitchin and just jump as part timer. Part time is the shit imo. Show up only when the dz is busy and making money.


peek  (D 8884)

May 5, 2011, 7:01 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
After trying to make a full time job out of skydiving for the last 3 yrs,. I'm wondering. is it really worth it?

No.

In reply to:
I really enjoyed being an instructor and after investing so much in time and energy to get all my ratings, I hate to just walk away.

Being a professional in a "real job" and being a skydiving instructor do not have to be mutually exclusive. You will need to "fight" a little bit more to get some of those students to teach, but it will be worth it. (And you might need to teach at a DZ that is a bit less "commercial".)

In reply to:
...and you can be replaced by the next 500 jump wonder that walks in the door.

Peter, if you are a really good instructor, it is my opinion that you should not even want to work for a DZO that would favor a 500 jump wonder over you.

It will take a bit more work, but I think you can find a balance, enjoy yourself, and keep all of your ratings current too.


obelixtim  (D 84)

May 5, 2011, 7:15 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Like the saying goes, the only way to make a small fortune out of skydiving, is to start with a large fortune...


jumpdude17  (D License)

May 15, 2011, 6:23 PM
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In reply to:
No ins., no benefits, and you can be replaced by the next 500 jump wonder that walks in the door. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

I am a 500 jump wonder, where did you just quit so I can replace you. btw whats your wing loading???


baronn  (D 22387)

May 23, 2011, 5:00 PM
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Re: [jumpdude17] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Mystery place. 145,673 to 1 if you must know.


jumpdude17  (D License)

May 26, 2011, 3:33 PM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

maybe if the DZO's didnt treat the experienced guys like shit we wouldn't need the uspa and the manufacturers to dumb down tandems and there would be less tandem injurys and fatalities. instead they give us a list of tandem commandments trying to make it safe for any dumbass with 500 jumps to replace experience. turn and burn your instructors dzo's as long as you make your money who cares....right?


airtwardo  (D License)

May 26, 2011, 4:06 PM
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In reply to:
maybe if the DZO's didnt treat the experienced guys like shit we wouldn't need the uspa and the manufacturers to dumb down tandems and there would be less tandem injurys and fatalities. instead they give us a list of tandem commandments trying to make it safe for any dumbass with 500 jumps to replace experience. turn and burn your instructors dzo's as long as you make your money who cares....right?


Just curious...are you a TM at a commercial center?

Have you been screwed over by a few DZO's??
If so who and why?

Inquiring minds want to know where it's bad, and how bad IS it? Cool


riggerrob  (D 14840)

May 27, 2011, 9:06 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Yup!
Long hours (ten hours per day, seven days per week), low wages (bus drivers make more), DZO changing your work load - at random, without telling you to your face -, but it was work-place bullying that finally pushed me out.

Too many sadistic "comedians" reminding me of my injuries (in a plane crash).

Rob Warner
Strong Tandem Examiner


(This post was edited by riggerrob on May 27, 2011, 9:07 AM)


riggerrob  (D 14840)

May 27, 2011, 9:13 AM
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Re: [jumpdude17] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
maybe if the DZO's didnt treat the experienced guys like shit we wouldn't need the uspa and the manufacturers to dumb down tandems and there would be less tandem injurys and fatalities. instead they give us a list of tandem commandments trying to make it safe for any dumbass with 500 jumps to replace experience. turn and burn your instructors dzo's as long as you make your money who cares....right?

.......................................................................

Manufacturer's guidelines are fine for professionals, but will make no difference to amateurs.
Amateurs will continue to do what ever amuses them (horse-vaulting, boob-squeezing, etc.) while some DZOs back them.
I quit my last full-time skydiving job after too many bullies shoulder-checked me and offered to punch me out after I dared to remind them of procedures written by Strong Enterprises. The worst part was that manifest reflexively backed the bullies and was not the least bit interested in my side of hte story.

Even after the worst bully has moved on, the DZO is baffled as to why I am reluctant to work for them again.


jumpdude17  (D License)

May 28, 2011, 9:03 PM
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Re: [airtwardo] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post



Just curious...are you a TM at a commercial center?

Have you been screwed over by a few DZO's??
If so who and why?

Inquiring minds want to know where it's bad, and how bad IS it? Cool
dont want to mention names but there are more bad than good. I work somewhere now where I dont have to deal with the bs but understand there are a lot of TI's that still have to put up with it.


VideoFly  (D 25621)

May 29, 2011, 7:36 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

I started off at a small DZ with a group of great people. We did a lot of RW and taught some students and did some tandems. At night we celebrated the accomplishments of the day. As years went on, tandem and video volume grew, old timers retired, and the RW and celebrations slowed down. Later on, the DZO got a new plane and hanger and the tandem business flourished. Workers would come and go each week and many had no names to be remembered. I became a worker and for a part time job, business was good. But it was work; not the fun and camaraderie we once had. I had a skydiving injury that ended my work status. Nobody cared and I was immediately replaced. I guess thats the way things are at many DZs. I understand the business concept in running a DZ, but times have certainly changed. Now I do an occasional jump and to tell you the truth, I dont miss the frenzy. In fact, I watch workers scurry from job to job with both admiration and concern. If youre looking for warm and fuzzies, youll probably need to search around, but it seems that the skydiving business grows best with a somewhat impersonal perspective. In my full-time job, as a business manager and large team leader, I know that this does not need to be the case. But in my limited skydiving experience, it is just the way it is. Take it or leave it; you are expendable. Unsure


Tink1717  (D 12524)

May 30, 2011, 4:47 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

If you're making more at your other job and you're unhappy with pro jumping, then it's time to move on. Write the time and $ off as loss and don't make the same mistake again. Skydiving is a cottage industry that has no hope of becoming a mainstream business that has regular employees who enjoy the trappings of most toher businesses. That is simply the way it is and I don't see it changing anytime soon.


jumpdude17  (D License)

Jun 2, 2011, 4:55 PM
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Re: [Tink1717] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
If you're making more at your other job and you're unhappy with pro jumping, then it's time to move on. Write the time and $ off as loss and don't make the same mistake again. Skydiving is a cottage industry that has no hope of becoming a mainstream business that has regular employees who enjoy the trappings of most toher businesses. That is simply the way it is and I don't see it changing anytime soon.

wow, you are either a dzo or a douche, there are other jobs that are seasonal or dependent on how many customers walk through the door, yet the people in other industries are still treated with respect and have rights as a worker. it has changed at some dzs and yes it can be a real job!


Deisel  (D 31661)

Jun 2, 2011, 6:58 PM
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Re: [Tink1717] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Please explain why you think this. Any establishment can be run in a professional manner. Anything from whore houses to crack houses to houses of worship and everything in between can make both the customers and staff feel appreciated and welcome. It all depends on how its done.


Tink1717  (D 12524)

Jun 2, 2011, 7:12 PM
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Because DZs are run as cottage businesses. No employee's, everyone is a contractor, no unions, benefits, wage protections or essential rights. That is not to say we aren't professionaL. It is to say we're small. I once thought that jumping would get to the level of, say skiing or SCUBA, but that was years ago and before I was in the biz. Now I see it completely differently.


Tink1717  (D 12524)

Jun 2, 2011, 7:16 PM
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Re: [jumpdude17] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Niether DZO or douche (unless you ask my wife), just been in it a while and having had a real job, with a union, benefits and the other protections largess confers, I don't see jumping as getting there. We will never be as big as, say skiing or SCUBA or golf for that matter. There won't be a deduction for a 401K for a tandem master or an AFF guy. We don't have the numbers to make that happen. I wish we did.


Squeak  (E 1313)

Jun 2, 2011, 11:24 PM
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Re: [Tink1717] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Niether DZO or douche (unless you ask my wife), just been in it a while and having had a real job, with a union, benefits and the other protections largess confers, I don't see jumping as getting there. We will never be as big as, say skiing or SCUBA or golf for that matter. There won't be a deduction for a 401K for a tandem master or an AFF guy. We don't have the numbers to make that happen. I wish we did.

There are places in Australia that are working towards unionising now. Particularly the larger tandem focussed DZs.
It can be done, but it requires a cultural shift. There's nothing stopping even small DZ from having Staff, and part timers.




demoknite  (D License)

May 25, 2013, 8:24 AM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Its so much more fun when you dont have to rely on the jumps or the DZO. A week of unseasonable weather is not going to make you miss rent. And your not fighting to get on the last load with a 50 year overweight woman at sunset cause you need the $50.
Keep fun jumping and impart knowledge around the DZ. Maybe you can do some AFF jumps when the DZ is in a jam.


irishrigger  (D 297)

May 28, 2013, 1:28 PM
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Re: [baronn] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

thats the question everyone has asked,is it worth it? it depends what you look from it. i used all of my rating to travel the world(Tandem,AFF,Master Rigger Camera etc ) NZ,USA,Thailand,Canada,Spain,Germany,France, Belgium just to mention a few. i enjoyed my time traveling and getting around. without a doubt New Zealand was the best place. i have also been very lucky in the places i have worked and have been treated very well by the owners of each centre,with only 1 exception. if you dont like the way you get treated,say thank you and move on to somewhere else.
however these days i would advise keep your regular work and just jump on weekends and most importanly do a few fun jumps. doing tandem full time can get tiring and you loose the fun factor a bit. well i have after almost 5000 tandems. yes i still enjoy them but not as much as when i started.

only other thing you can do is start your own DZ somewhere and make that your buissiness. then you are the boss and treat your staff the way it should be done! WinkWinkWink

good luck with what ever oyu decide

Rodger


baronn  (D 22387)

Jun 16, 2013, 5:53 PM
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Re: [irishrigger] When is it time................ [In reply to] Can't Post

Seems like the best advice....



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